Category Archives: COVID-19

The COVID-19 Catastrophe in India Keeps Growing

By Vijay Prashad
April 26, 2021 – counterpunch.org

COVID-19 in IndiaIt is difficult to overstate the grip of COVID-19 on India. WhatsApp bristles with messages about this or that friend and family member with the virus, while there are angry posts about how the central government has utterly failed its citizenry. This hospital is running out of beds and that hospital has no more oxygen, while there is evasion from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Cabinet.
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Of dollars and sense

By Raffique Shah
April 26, 2021

Raffique ShahI round off my intervention on the many possibilities we might find in a new post-­Covid economy by reminding readers the pandemic has hammered economies across the world, irrespective of their sizes, in ways never before seen.

Oil was rocked to unimaginably low prices. Stock markets swayed as if in stupor, major commodity prices collapsed to uneconomic levels, and the virus disrupted world production of essential industries, goods and services, leaving governments confused, powerless, defeated.
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Out with the old, in with the new

By Raffique Shah
April 19, 2021

Raffique ShahThere comes a time in the affairs of a nation—and such occurrences are rare, maybe once in a century—when events shaped by the actions of citizens or unleashed by the forces of nature create the conditions for change, sometimes radical change that otherwise would hardly be considered, far less adopted, but which, when measured by the degree of dislocation the nation faces if its leaders fail to act, may offer opportunities that guide us along a path we didn’t think existed.
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Opening the borders

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
April 13, 2021

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeI left Trinidad and Tobago on March 16, 2020, a few days before the borders were closed to citizens and visitors alike. I was on the verge of departing for a ten-day visit to India, at the invitation of the Indian government as a part of its Academic Visitors Programme for distinguished scholars.
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Pass the teacup

By Raffique Shah
April 12, 2021

Raffique ShahThere must be an ultra-secret super-Lotto somewhere in the universe, where only the super-wealthy and governments-by-vaps play for super-stakes—you know, jackpots paid in gazillions, in currencies-of-choice, and in cash, s’il vous plait. Really, there must be. Why else would Finance Minister Colm Imbert and Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley strut around a country that looks like an abandoned steam locomotive whose era has gone, they looking cooler than the proverbial cucumber, seemingly without care or worry, while lesser mortals like your humble scribe worry to no end over the near-evaporation of foreign exchange, the unavailability of any good or service that we can sell in large enough volumes that will yield the billions of US dollars we require for our sustenance?
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PM Rowley tests positive for COVID-19

PM Rowley tests positive for COVID-19
The diagnosis comes mere hours before the PM was set to receive his first COVID-19 vaccine dose.

Prime Minister tests positive for covid-19
Rowley is in isolation and under medical supervision.

CMO: PM will have to wait six months
Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Roshan Parasram this morning said that according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendations, anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 must wait six months before getting the vaccine.
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Now’s not the time to misbehave

By Raffique Shah
April 05, 2021

Raffique ShahI suppose it had to come to this—an explosion of Covid-19 cases just when we thought we could see a ray of sunshine at the end of a year-long dark tunnel we’ve cautiously navigated, when the first tranche of vaccines had arrived, launching Trinidad and Tobago into the immunisation phase of the war against this deadly virus.

It’s not as if the surge in confirmed cases ambushed us. We were warned by the medical team that has thus far efficiently conducted the war against Covid-19, that should we continue to breach the simple safety practices that have worked for us, hence expose ourselves to regression, we would encounter a nasty backlash. But there are some among us who are plain “harden”, who must misbehave to look macho.
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Don’t Let God Stueps on Us

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
March 31, 2021

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeThe UK and the EU have populations of 68 million and 746 million people respectively. On Tuesday the UK tried to make up with the EU over its misunderstanding about the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccines. Boris Johnson, UK’s prime minister, sent Lord Eddie Lister, to Brussels, the headquarters of the EU, “as part of an effort to secure millions of doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine vital to UK’s fight against coronavirus” (FT, March 23).
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Right, wrong, but spot on

By Raffique Shah
March 29, 2021

Raffique ShahLast week, dealing with the new vaccines that are unfolded almost daily to fight the Covid19 pandemic, I unfairly targeted the World Health Organisation and the Pan American Health Organisation as having betrayed countries like Trinidad and Tobago that have adhered to the rules of engagement, quietly awaiting their turns to the first allocations of whatever brand of the vaccine the global and regional health organisations have secured.
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Betrayed by PAHO, WHO?

By Raffique Shah
March 22, 2021

Raffique ShahIt took a global pandemic that has, in one short year, claimed 2.7 million lives, infected 123 million people in 221 countries, to expose man for what he really is—a beast in human form.

For all his posturing on being civilised, on cooperation in the battle against the Covid-19 virus through agencies such as the World Health Organisation and the United Nations, when several vaccines were finally developed, tried and approved, the wealthiest, most powerful nations simply trampled on the poor, grabbed all they could without shame, pity or any kind of emotion that is supposed to distinguish man from beast.
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